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Cloud Computing

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What is Cloud Computing?

Just about every company in every industry today uses some combination of computing services, whether it is servers, databases, storage, software, analytics or more. With cloud computing, these services are provided over the internet – referred to as “the cloud” in order to prevent companies from having to run their own computing infrastructure and to allow for much faster innovation as well as economies of scale (because cloud service providers can offer the same services to a much wider range of customers). 

An organization that uses cloud computing can have on-demand access to the services they purchase and in many cases can “pay as they go” and only pay for what they use. 

Types of Cloud Computing Services

There are a number of different models of cloud services that are offered, with the three most common being Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS):


SaaS solutions are also called cloud-based software or cloud applications and are software solutions that can be purchased and then accessed from the cloud using a web browser, dedicated client or API. SaaS products are priced on a monthly or annual subscription basis or a “pay as you go” plan. 


Most software solutions offered today are SaaS products, including Matics’ solution. With Matics, as with other SaaS solutions, all of the data is stored securely in the cloud which means relevant personnel can access the information from any device at any time and can always be updated on the status of the factory and can take any necessary actions. In addition, any upgrades to the product are automatically pushed out to users for immediate benefit. 


PaaS products are used by software developers, offering them access to hardware, infrastructure and development tools on-demand without having to maintain the platform on-premises with all the associated costs and complications. All of the relevant servers, operating system softwares and databases are stored at the cloud provider’s database and the developers have access to a menu from which they choose the servers and environments that they need in order to create, test, deploy, upgrade and scale new applications. 


IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service)

With IaaS, a user can essentially rent the servers, storage and networking needed to build applications. Using IaaS means being able to add or remove resources as-needed to eliminate the need to spend a lot on buying infrastructure and other resources that may only  be needed periodically. 

Cloud Types

When a company uses cloud computing services, they can choose from the type of cloud they want to use: public, private, hybrid, or multicloud. 

Public Cloud

The classic cloud-computing model involves the public cloud. Public cloud uses the public internet that is accessible to anyone and can be used for SaaS applications and other types of cloud services that may be offered for free or using different pricing models. The provider of the public cloud is responsible for managing the data centers and infrastructure that its customers use, and all of the customers share the same infrastructure making it very easy to scale and cost efficient. Examples of some of the biggest public cloud providers are Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure. 

Private Cloud

In a private cloud environment, all of the infrastructure and computing resources are only available to one specific customer. The customer has access to the scalability and ease of delivery of cloud computing with the added benefit of more control and security more similar to an on-premises environment. Private clouds can be hosted either in the user’s data center or that of the cloud provider. 

A company might opt for private cloud in order to adhere to compliance regulation especially if their business involves confidential documents or other sensitive data.  

Hybrid Cloud

A combination of public and private clouds is called hybrid cloud and refers to a situation in which a company combines their private and public cloud services into one infrastructure so that they can choose which one to use for each application that they need to operate. 


When a company uses two or more clouds from different providers, it is called a multicloud environment. This is a good choice for an organization that wants to be able to choose services from a number of different vendors, but if too many providers are used it can be difficult to manage all of the different tools and security protocols. A hybrid multicloud environment is one in which a company uses a mix of private and public cloud from different vendors. 

Benefits of Cloud Computing

  • Cost savings – using cloud computing means not having to buy servers or operating systems or deal with upgrading hardware or software when it becomes out of date, all of which add up to large cost savings. 
  • Agility  – with cloud services, companies can test and release new products faster without first having to go through the IT procurement process and acquire new infrastructure – whatever they need is available to them on demand. 
  • Flexibility – for companies using an application only at certain times of the week or year, it can be much more cost effective to host it in the cloud versus owning infrastructure that will end up being idle for so much of the week or year. In addition, cloud-based computing means the flexibility to access the applications from any device. 
  • Security – files can be backed up securely on the cloud, ensuring that companies are not at risk to lose important information should a hard drive crash. 

Cloud Computing Challenges

  • Costs – in some cases, certain programs may be more expensive to run in the cloud than they would if the infrastructure necessary was available on-premises.
  • Loss of competitive advantage – because SaaS providers, for example,  have many clients, it is likely that a company will be using the same product as its competitors which may make it challenging to maintain a competitive advantage in the market.
  • Migration – it can be costly and complicated to migrate existing programs to the cloud, especially if employees are lacking the necessary skills and need to be trained. 
  • Outages – there is always the risk of cloud outages in the case of internet disruptions or cyberattacks. 

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